April 1999 Edition

ABTCO/Abitibi-Price Siding Class Action

We have hardboard siding on our house and were told it is neither Masonite or Georgia Pacific. Are there any other manufacturers and do any have Class Action law suits against them?
There are so many Class Action law suits going around on exterior siding, it is becoming difficult to keep up with all of them.
There is a State Class Action law suit against ABTCO/Abitibi-Price on their hardboard siding. The suit claims the siding prematurely deteriorates. The suit addresses issues such as warping, rotting, mold growth and an inability to hold paint. The siding looks identical to Masonite or Georgia Pacific and it is very difficult to identify. Some of the siding manufacturers do not print any identification marking or names on the back side of the panels.

 Siding 1

Need to submit a claim to ABTCO?  Submit a written claim and include photos of your siding to Steven J. Meyers, Manager-Technical/Warranty Services, ABTco, Inc., P.O. Box 98 Highway 268, Roaring River, NC 28669.
Homeowners report that ABTCO will also send you a very complicated, several page claim form to fill out. Many people report that the company is not interested in settling any claims and will send you a "denied" letter, blaming the siding problems on poor installation or poor maintenance. This is consistent with a news story from the Atlanta Journal - The Atlanta Constitution, dated Thursday, November 6, 1997 which states: "The manufacturer (ABTCO) responded in a letter to Bienkowski (the homeowner) that his siding is deteriorating because the house, which has been repainted twice since it was built, doesn't have enough paint on it. Steve Roe, warranty services coordinator at ABTCO's plant in North Carolina, said in "99 percent of cases," deteriorating siding was either improperly maintained or installed."

 Siding 2

Of all the homeowners that have sent the Defective Hardboard Siding Information Center email from around the country and have submitted claims on their own (without attorneys), just two have received any sort of settlement from ABTCO.
The siding does need proper maintenance to prevent moisture from deteriorating the product. However, many class actions have found that the siding itself is difficult to maintain and requires painting more often than normal. Most manufacturers require painting every four years which is excessive.
There was a Georgia State class action filed September 25, 1998.  Roach et al. v. ABTco, Inc., ABT Building Products Corporation, Abitibi-Price Corporation, Abitibi-Consolidated, Inc. and Destiny Industries, Inc., Civil Action No. 98-9794-3, Superior Court of DeKalb County, Georgia. It includes past and present owners of residences and mobile homes who reside or resided in Georgia. For more information, contact the Law Offices of Clinton Whetstone Sitton, The Roswell Oaks, 4840 Roswell Rd. Suite E-200, Atlanta, Georgia 30342, Telephone: 404-257-0777, Fax: 404-851-0142; or Paul A. Dominick, Nexsen, Pruet Jacobs & Pollard, LLP, 200 Meeting Street, Suite 301, P.O. Box 486, Charleston, South Carolina 29402. Telephone: 843-577-9440, Fax: 843-720-1777. Website: www.siding.ilsweb.com/ABTCO.htm
There is another Class Action in the works for Boise Cascade hardboard siding. The siding deteriorates in the
same manner as all of the others. Identification of Boise Cascade is not known.
Need to submit a claim to Boise Cascade? Mail your claim to: Boise Cascade Corporation, Timber & Wood Products Division, P.O. Box 62, Boise, ID 83707, Attn: Tana Rasmussen; phone: 208-384-6162; fax: 208-384-7160; e-mail Tana_Rasmussen@bc.com. Include six photographs, one of each side of your house from a distance and two close-ups that will clearly show the problems you are experiencing.

    Siding 3

To check out the official Boise Cascade website, go to http://www.bcewp.com/index.htm. Their website does not contain a copy of the warranty and Boise Cascade does not send a copy along with their claim form.

Source: Defective Hardboard Siding Information Center


If any of you know of any other Class Action law suits that we have not been addresses in the past issues of Home Tips, please drop us a note and we will research them and report in later issues.

ABTCO/Abitibi-Price - Hardboard Siding
Web Site: www.siding.ilsweb.com/ABTCO.htm
Georgia Pacific Corporation - Jarratt & Catawba Siding
Web Site: www.gpclaims.com
Louisiana Pacific Corporation - Inner-Seal Siding
Web Site:  www.hunt.com/lpsiding/articles/htm
Masonite Corporation - OmniWood Siding
Web Site: www.kinsella.com/masonite/Fullnoteomni.html/anchor140131
Masonite Corporation - X-90 Siding

 If you have a question, change of address, comment, home tip or would like to send Home Tips to your clients, send your letter to Home Tips, Christian Building Inspectors, Inc., 3697 Habersham Lane, Duluth, Georgia 30096. You can E-Mail your questions to us at rodharrison@christianbuildinginspectors.com. We reserve the right to edit questions for length.

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Coldwell Bankers/Buckhead Brokers

5252 Roswell Road, Suite 20

Atlanta, Georgia 30342   

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